Does Russia own Bulgaria's tobacco monopoly, Bulgartabac..

April 15, 2009 - Bulgaria’s attempts to privatize its state tobacco organization have possibly been dealt another blow.

Russia intends to take back a number of companies abroad that were once the property of the former Soviet Union, including Bulgarian cigarette maker Bulgartabac, Vladimir Kozhin, head of Russia's Presidential Property Management Department, said on Thursday (April 9th). "We are investigating ... and if we find out that the company was once ours, but in a not very legal way has come into foreign hands, we will launch a procedure for its return," Kozhin said. Russia has repeatedly raised the question of Bulgartabac's ownership. The Soviet Union acquired it as reparations after World War II. (RIA Novosti, Sofia news agency, Standart,, Focus - 09/04/09) Kozhin marked that the objects which Russian wants back are many.

Kozhin: “We are convinced Bulgartabac is a Russian enterprise. The Bulgarians believe that ‘it’s all long forgotten’, but we have documents.”

Reference: Russia wants “Bulgartabac” back,, 4/9/2009; Russia renews claims over Bulgaria's Bulgartabac company,, 4/10/2009.

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